For true car enthusiasts, there are few situations as chilling as driving to a location and realizing that it is only valet parking. Mercedes-Benz has released a short film that addresses those fears to promote the new S-Class. Specifically, “Valet Guys” is an advertisement for the new Intelligent Park Pilot feature that allows your car to find its own parking space (in well-equipped parking garages).
For most of the two minute video, a group of guys you wouldn’t even trust your Hertz rental with pull J-turns, donuts and drifts in a bunch of almost classic Benzes. The tire-smoking antics pertain to cars like the R129 SL, R170 SLK 200 and W202 C43 AMG. They are even launching an R107 Mercedes SL into the air, Dukes of Hazzard style. It’s actually a pretty entertaining reminder of how the 80s and 90s are great pre-CGI stunt vehicles.
It’s also a rare opportunity to see some non-Mercedes cars featured in a Mercedes ad. A 1969 Mustang coupe, Ferrari 308 GTS and the second-generation Subaru Legacy are also on the receiving end of the Valet Guys’ abuse.
Oddly, the video doesn’t really show what Intelligent Park Pilot actually does, which feels like a bit of a bust. It is much more than the automatic parking system that Lexus introduced on the LS about 15 years ago. Here you pull the car to a designated area in the parking garage, leave the car and activate the self-parking system on your smartphone.
After clicking through a few alerts (have you left something in the car, such as belongings or a child?), The car will find its own parking space, reverse, steer, and even stop for other cars while navigating the garage on its own. When you drive back to the garage, you can call the car with your phone so that it is ready in the drop-off / pick-up zone.
Mercedes is quick to deny that the system is not yet available for a wide rollout and that the parking structure must be equipped to handle Intelligent Park Pilot. Here’s a video of a German test.
As anyone who has seen Ferris Bueller’s Day Off knows, handing over the keys to your pride and joy to Peter Parkers can have disastrous consequences. It is a pity that you cannot build this function into your classic with this function yet.